The USA didn't just need to beat Egypt by three goals. It needed a three-goal Brazil victory over Italy in the other Group B game on
Sunday -- which it got, thanks to three Brazilian goals scored in the last eight minutes of the first half. Italy's early exit immediately put Coach Marcello
on the defensive.
Italy fell on a pair of goals by Luis Fabiano
and an own goal by defender Andrea
, prompting talk that it was time to break up the world champion, the oldest team at the Confederations Cup. Coach Marcello Lippi
there was no need to make mass changes.
"You cannot throw seven or eight young players in at once," Lippi said. "You need to integrate them, to change the team slowly.
The best team I could choose was the one standing on the field tonight."
Italy finished last in Group B.
"If I do have any regrets," Lippi added, "it
is that this was not the correct image of this team for the world to see. I know our performance was disappointing and we have to go home, but it was not the real Italy tonight."
Group B June 21 in Pretoria Brazil 3 Italy 0.
Goals: Luis Fabiano 37,
43, on goal 45. Italy --
Buffon, Zambrotta, Chiellini, Cannavaro, Dossena, Montolivo (Pepe, 46), De Rossi, Camoranesi, Pirlo, Toni (Gilardino 58),
Iaquinta (Rossi, 38) Brazil --
Julio Cesar, Maicon, Lucio, Juan (Luisao, 24), Andre Santos, Ramires (Josue 86), Gilberto Silva (Kleberson 84), Felipe
Melo, Kaka, Luis Fabiano, Robinho. Referee:
Benito Archundia (Mexico).